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The Portrait of a Lady

It is a story about the grandmother of Khushwant Singh. He presents her as a tender, loving and deeply her religious old lady. He says that, she could be seeing reciting her rosary all the time. Singh parents had gone to live in the city leaving him behind the village under the care of his grandmother. She would get him ready for school and used to do all his necessary work. The school as attached with a temple. All the children sat in the verandah reciting alphabets while his grandmother is engaged reading holy scriptures. A turning comes in the life of both of them when they went to city to settle down. The bond grandson and his grandmother brooked. Now, he goes to an English school but the grandmother never liked the way he was taught. The grandmother agreed the fact and she used to spin the wheel from sunrise to sunset to compensate that. Only during the afternoon, she would relax by feeding the sparrows with little pieces of bread. They were her best friends. After that Singh went up aboard for higher studies. After 5 years he came back, incredibly he was welcomed by his grandmother who was not grown a single day older. She celebrated the return of her grandson by collecting some women of neighborhood and beating drum for several hours. But in morning grandmother’s health deteriorates and she reveals that she was near her end. So, she decided to pray. Quite suddenly, the rosary falls from her hand and she exhaled her last breath. Along with her funeral, the sparrows flew away.


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